Saturday-Sunday, Days #77-78 of Phase 2 of Reopening
We request continued prayers for my husband's mother D. She is recovering, now in a long-term, acute care facility, from COVID-19 and hasn't been home in eight weeks. We value communicating with her via FaceTime as often as the facility will facilitate, which is almost every day.
Saturday was a busy day of errands for us, but one was particularly fun and could hardly be called an errand: a local homeschooling store is moving locations, so was having a 25%-off-everything sale, when its prices on used curriculum are already 25-75% off retail. I enjoyed buying some books that the kids and I are still poring over.
Also, we had a delightful phone conversation with Grandmom who just learned how to use her new tracheotomy speaking valve! Her voice is quiet and hoarse but unmistakably clear and she laughed, calling herself, "Grandmom Frog." She is recovering from COVID and we appreciate so much the many prayers.
|Facetime with Grandmom|
Because our Mass is at 12:30 and we often are not home until 3:00 or 4:00, we tend to have celebratory dinners for Sunday events on Saturday. Our fancier-than-normal meal to celebrate the vigil of Joseph's First Holy Communion was:
- Honeybaked ham
- Fettucine Alfredo
- Sweet potato casserole
After dinner, the kids went swimming and I served cookies and ice cream to round out the fun. When they all went to sleep, I decorated the eating area for Joseph to see upon waking!
Fun breakfast menu:
- Leftover Honeybaked ham
- Fried eggs
- Watermelon and strawberries
- Homemade whipped cream
Joseph was able to open one gift before Mass: we bought him a new brown scapular, hand sewn by Tracy Cruz to commemorate both First Holy Communion and the twin hearts, as well as the red for the Feast of the Pentacost on which Joseph would be receiving. Before the Mass, the communicants were enrolled in the brown scapular.
While my husband and oldest two had been to a couple of Masses, this was the first one back for me and all the other children. Getting ready to go somewhere all together--and look our best for photos!--was a challenge and I felt rusty. I did not recall that our children have only occasionally worn shoes for three months and never worn socks, so the four-year-old, in particular, threw fits over BUMPS IN HIS SOCKS. I got the two-year-old all dressed and had basically carried him everywhere until we arrived at Mass and were walking to have our professional photographs taken. David kept falling down like a drunken sailor until I realized that he truly has not worn shoes all this time. He was unable to wear shoes while he had a cast on his leg for four weeks, and he still is not wearing shoes because his one foot is still very stiff and pointing jaunty to the side. He simply couldn't walk in the shoes at all! It was kind of like if you put hard sole shoes on your cat to see what would happen: ha!
[I will edit this to add in all the professional photos when they are ready!]
At church, Joseph asked to light a candle for Grandmom's recovery, so we did.
Due to the social distancing required by the parish, we had our own pew reserved and Joseph was instructed to hang his banner there. At our parish, this week during Phase 2, only 140 people are allowed in the church itself. The staff had put four tents outside, some chairs, and a big bucket of ice waters for the few dozen sitting outside in the humid heat. Indoors, every other pew was roped off with a pretty ribbon, and family units were instructed to sit six feet apart from anyone else in the pews.
It was "interesting" to say the least trying to manage Mass for the first time in almost three months with these little tykes, whom I would normally never have sit in the first row under any circumstances. We took David out four separate times (and missing seeing Joseph's reception as a result). Below, he is showing you his "flower," which is a piece of too-tall grass he plucked and treasured in response to jealousy at seeing his brother Joseph carrying a beautiful cut flower to put in a vase at the foot of the statue of Our Lady. David wanted a flower, too!
After Mass, we ordered delivery from a favorite pizza restaurant. Our priest was even able to stop by in the afternoon and enjoy a slice and conversation with us for about an hour: that was such an honor and a treat!
Joseph opened his many handmade cards from siblings and gifts from loved ones.
|Hershey's Kisses with FHC stickers applied|
We very much enjoyed the cake made by a professional baker, as my blog readers know darned well I can't make something beautiful like this.
In the evening, children played outdoors while I transitioned my annuals from the flagging pansies to the red geraniums for summer.
I wrote two new movie reviews from the last week: you can always check out my list of movie and television reviews here.
“Greater” (2016, rated PG), review by KTL
This movie was a fantastic pick to watch with our 13-year-old boy. Greater is a true story and a Christian-produced film about American football player Brandon Burlsworth. Brandon was accepted after a walk-on try out to the Arkansas Razorbacks where his incredibly hard work and true Christian love for others earned him a spot as a scholarship student and ultimately an NFL pick before his tragic and early death. It is so difficult to find sports movies that really appeal to adolescent males that are clean and truly inspiring, but this is one of them. Difficult areas of the movie are: (1) Brandon was obese and he is teased for his weight as a youth and then severely during his first year in college football. The teasing is so unkind and cruel that it is hard to watch. However, this film is aimed at teenagers and this teasing is an excellent opportunity for discussion about moral choices. (2) The movie remains clean in reference to dating and sexuality throughout except for one line I thought was uncharacteristic and went too far. When Brandon’s eyesight starts to fail and he gets the ugly black glasses that end up being his trademark, his fellow teammates tease him and one person says he will not go on any dates with the ladies if he wears those glasses (but says it in a way more crude than I will publish here). (3) Alcoholism is a subplot because Brandon is of a Protestant religion that does not drink any alcohol whatsoever. His biological father is an alcoholic and we see scenes of the father becoming drunk. However, this provides wonderful opportunity for discussion with a teenager because of the father’s growing maturity, his apologies, and God’s grace at the father’s beautiful death.
“The Trouble with Angels (1966), review by KTL
This comedy film is “about the adventures of two girls, later best friends, in an all-girls Catholic school run by nuns.” At the beginning of their high-school career, these girls play many hijinks--but nothing cruel--on the nuns. They are decidedly disobedient and there are many opportunities for discussion with youth watching. However, the viewer is slowly growing to love the girls. Meanwhile, the nuns are not a point of mockery: each nun has a distinct personality, quirks and all, but they are women of respect and we get to know them more deeply as the four years of high-school pass by. During the senior year of high-school, the viewer gets to see the main character truly mature and (spoiler alert!) decide to enter the novitiate herself. It is a beautiful and actually believable end to the story. This is a great point to discuss: how much a soul can transform through the years. There are some points of concern. I watched with my daughters 11 and 9. (1) There is a scene in which band uniforms are lent to the girls to wear for a competition. The band uniforms are very immodest and, while the mother superior is shocked, she lets the girls go to the competition anyway, and they win the cash prize which will buy a new heater for the school. My daughters and I felt this was entirely out of character and the outfits were too immodest. (I would not have my husband or sons watch this scene.) (2) There is one passing line in which it is said that there is a rumor that a certain girl is “illegitimate.” The other person replies that no, the girls is not illegitimate, as her father is “very careful about that sort of thing.”